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javier mendez

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  1. javier mendez

    Morality and Income Tax

    It's nothing to do with morals. If the people in a state want the government to supply top rate services then you have to tax. The Scandinavian countries seem to do it quite well. Of course some smart guys will leave and go and live in the US so they aren't taxed;-) It has to do with justice and equality, what kind of society do we want? That's the question. or do we still think high top wages are the result of hard work? Some people say if there is a minimun wage, why don't we fix a maximum wage? For christians let me remember you : "it is more difficult for a rich to go to heaven than for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle"
  2. javier mendez

    My Political Ideology

    Radical Socialist Democrat/Green I started being a social democrat and later a communist when I was a teenager. My family was very conservative and religious. I think I can say following Oscar Wilde that I was brought up under middle class morality: good husband, good worker, obedient and with no deep political thought. My father, who was a Franco's follower, used to say the very same words Franco said: "son, do as me, don't get involved in politics". My eldest brother and some school classmates opened my eyes and I started to collaborate in a communist organisation against the regime. When democracy came to Spain I really thought it was the time for a real leftist government. I soon became dissapointed. With the fall of the Berlin Wall, any communist option vanished. I still think there is no liberty without equality, and equality without liberty, but nothing can be done without the people. Decitions have to be taken by the people and democracy is not voting every four years. I wish we could really decide on what it is really important, even on the national budget. Radical democracy is the solution against using power for personal interests. Politicians are managers of what people decide it should be done, not decition-makers: people decide (by voting) politicians act. I also think we have to preserve this beautiful planet to next generations. We have no right to ruin it.
  3. javier mendez

    Meeting Two Presentations (Toulouse June 2005)

    Second language acquisition is an important issue in CLIL. A general overview en CLIL projects will be shown, especially through the Erupean Network EUROCLIC. Euroclicwww.euroclic.net A clil unit structure will be also discussed with some proposals for a SLA Help module and unit structure
  4. javier mendez

    ICT and Language Learning

    David, your are right, I tried to be practical. I know it is very difficult to talk about an international English language, and neither about an international Spanish language. But I am sure you agree that despite differences American English and British English are basically the same language and communication is possible whether you talk either variety. The same as Spanish is concerned. What I meant it is that any European student will probably will develop his career if he can talk English, otherwise his promotion will be very difficult. That's a fact and we have to make them aware of it.
  5. javier mendez

    ICT and Language Learning

    Juan Carlos, I agree with you. English is no more the language of the English people. Eward Said have appointed that one the aspects of English as an international language is that it stops being a patrimony of only English speaking people to become a world's patrimony. An international English language is growing and we have to stick to it. Our students we'll have to cope with anEnglish speaking Europe and this is the reason of teaching English not only as a foreign language but as an instruction language as well. I think the problem arises at language competence level: can a history teacher teach history with a low English competence? Can a student learn history with a low command of the English language in the four basic skills?
  6. javier mendez

    ICT and Language Learning

  7. javier mendez

    ICT and Language Learning

    David, that' s a great help for a start. Now, Spanish history teachers teaching in English can begin preparing classes. Do you know if there is any English dictionary of History terms which can be easily purchased by teachers? Dictionaries are a lot more handy. Another point is about propper methodoloy, What can language teachers tell us about the communicative approach? May it be helpul for a history teacher?
  8. javier mendez

    ICT and Language Learning

    About if a History teacher whose mother toungue is not English can't properly teach history, I think it also works the other way round: a foreign language teacher can't either teach History properly. I agree with what Vicente and Juan C. say: there is a need of collaborative job to be done. Another point, have the problems to be identify by experience or we can foresee some of them prior to teaching? Before facing a class to teach history in English without planned training beforehand where nobody is confortable with the English language can be very frustrating, and as Graham says, we are in the danger of not teaching either subject, nor English, nor History.
  9. javier mendez

    ICT and Language Learning

    Teaching in non native contexts Let me remember one of the aspects of HELP-project. I know it is important the use of ICT in teaching any subject, but one of the points which were brought up in preparing HELP project was the use of a foreign language in teaching any other subject but English, especially History, due to most participating teachers in the project were teachers of History. I want to specify some points about this part of the project: 1.- ICT are important, but it is important too the difficulties in teaching history in a foreign language 2.- Both teachers and students are using a language different from their mother toungue and they may feel unconfortable if not unsecure with the foreign language 3.- Interference between mother toungue and foreign language (Spanish-English, French- English, etc). There may be tipical errors and mistakes due to interference from the native language. Teachers should be able to identify them and correct them. 4.- Encouragement of using foreing language. Teachers must encourage their students to use the working language and avoid the use of mother toungue. This may arise problems related to the contents of the subject (History) What’s more important, History or English? 5.- Assesment of the subject: Should teachers evaluate only the contents of the subject or take into account the command of the foreign language as well? 6.- In order to be a successful teacher of history in a foreign language, the teacher must know some strategies when dealing with a foreign language and some language methodology to avoid students’ dissappointment. Theachers should be aware that they are not only teachers of History but teachers of foreign language as well. These are the kind of thoughts I would like teachers of history to ask themselves if they are going to be teachers of history in non-native contexts. It would be very interesting to know what history teachers think about these aspects and to know teachers’ experience when dealing in teaching history in a foreign language (I suppose basically English)
  10. javier mendez

    George Bush: Pre-Modernist Politician?

    The figures about US elections from El Pais journal (november, 18) are the following: For Bush voted: 40% of latin people, 45% of youngters, 50% of university educated people, 46% of new voters. About Religion: 47% of catholics voted for Kerry, 40% of protestans did too, and 74% of jews voted for Kerry too. Very similar to those offered by John Simkin. Only one thing, I don't really see Bush is supported by a clear christian fundametalism, What happens then? [/ This was the result: Moral Values (22), Economy (20), Terrorism (19), Iraq (15), Healthcare (8), Taxes (5) and Education (4). Other factors that need to be taken into consideration include the numbers who bothered to vote. A high percentage of the Evangelical/Born Again Christians decided to cast their vote (20.7m for Bush). Whereas other groups that overwhelmingly supported Kerry (Blacks and those living in poverty) had low turnout rates. This was especially true in the Deep South. Despite having a lot of blacks and people living in poverty, every state was won by Bush. The reason for this is the turnout rate.] Education, stupid, Education! That's another reason that explains the low turnout rate amongst poors and illiterate people I think the American education system is mainly voccational oriented and it forgets about forming educated, responsible citizens. To be part of a nation which is the most powerful one in man's history is surely a deep responsability.
  11. javier mendez

    Madrid Bombing

    I completely algree with you, Andy. I think politicians, as people representatives, should listen to the people they represent. What usually happens is that politicians change when in power and they just don't listen to people but to obscure economic interests. From my point of view, Spain must wthdraw troops from Irak, even with a UNO resolution. There is no way to change now what has bee wrongly done from the beginning.
  12. javier mendez

    Organización de los centros

    Aprovechando la victoria electoral del Psoe, la comunidad educativa debería establecer un debate sobre la educación con el objetivo de llegar a un consenso en una serie de medidas educativas para que la educación quede fuera de la lucha electoral. La educación es una apuesta a largo plazo y no puede estar sujeta a los cambios ideológicos del partido del gobierno. Uno de los problemas que considero centrales para la mejora del sistema educativo es la organización de los IES y CEIPs públicos, una organización heredada de tiempos pasados que tiene más en cuenta el control que la "eficacia educativa". La organización interna de los IES, por ejemplo, es, desde mi punto de vista, uno de los lastres y motivos de que no respondan a las necesidades de los chicos y chicas del nuevo siglo.
  13. javier mendez

    Do we live in a democracy?

    [t now relies on donations from wealthy individuals. Of course, it is very unusual for wealthy individuals to provide money to political parties committed to redistribution of wealth.] So, we have one point for a democratic regeneration: No private donations to parties should be allowed. Parties must be financed only by members. Why don't we just try to get some musts for a better democracy out of this forum?
  14. javier mendez

    E-HELP

    Thanks Richard a very good job I'll post it on Monday morning with translations. Don't panic Our National Agency said one is enough and Juan Carlos has already sent it. Thanks again and congratulations!
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